Little more needs to be said about events in Singapore. Slings and arrows finally parked after a 65-year war in which millions died on a divided Korean peninsula where a nuclear slingshot was assembled and decommissioned.
The world was taken to the brink of war and then back again.
That Donald J Trump will now become a Nobel Laureate is axiomatic however surprising such a sentence might be, but a second term as president, which is looking more likely by the day, may almost be as surprising.
With the US economy on the up, his G7 “partners” roasted in insults, and the Korean imbroglio basted in Trumpian batter – seasoned by the oft-reviled China and Russia, it is more entertaining to take a look at the smoking wreckage of Trump’s domestic opposition.
You could measure President Trump’s triumph not just by size of the smile on his face but the length of the faces of his enemies. Their vituperation and faux-liberal indignation on the one side and the sound of profit expectations deflating and a hard-power era crashing made a truly terrible din. Though I rather enjoyed it personally, as the only people I despise more than Trump are his bitter enemies. When, two years ago, I coined the phrase “I’m not happy Donald Trump is president, but I’m very happy indeed that Hillary Clinton isn’t” it was days like this I had in mind. Clinton never could nor ever would have crossed the bridge of peace in North-East Asia.
Just like when another Republican president, Richard M Nixon, “opened” to China in 1972 – ending a quarter of a century of non-relations, the confounded opposition in the United States consists of two apparently contradictory sets of interests. But in both cases (and many more) they are actually two sides of the same coin.
Liberal democrats advocated (as well as a super-hawkish stance towards Moscow) a posture of war towards China and the doubling down of America’s failed security investment in Taiwan.
Liberals were aghast at the sight of a US president cavorting with men in Mao suits, then as well as now. This is rewarding “dictatorship” they cried, then as now. What about “human rights”they asked, then as now.
On the coin’s other side though was real coin. The US military-industrial complex – against which yet another Republican president, Eisenhower, had warned the world – was not just welfare-ism for capitalism it was a bonanza for capitalists. An apparently never-ending Eldorado fueled by the ever-present “threat” of war with the twin Red Menace in the East, Eisenhower had warned.
No war, no profits – quite a simple equation actually. In Trump’s case exactly the same dichotomy obtains vituperation in stereo.
The bright shiny liberals, clustered around Hillary Clinton, the Ivy League establishment responsible for many of the worst US wars, the east and west coast elite can’t accept that Trump can even tie his shoelaces, never mind pull off the diplomatic deal of the century. Their visceral hatred of the vulgar Trump has blinded them with prejudice and ire. That his suave Democrat predecessors dropped bombs and grabbed pussy with all the panache of Curtis LeMay crossed with Harvey Weinstein, is how they like it. Killing whilst crooning is the Democratic way.
Trump’s bull in a china shop doesn’t break enough china for the liberals, that’s the long and the short of it.
Thus Trump’s call for the return of Russia to the G7 must be buried in derision and false accusation. His peace process in Korea cannot be allowed to succeed. After all if the peaceful resolution of international disputes by diplomacy rather than war became the new normal, there would be nowhere left for the likes of the Clintons to “come, see and kill”.
And for Trump’s deepest state enemies this is the greatest threat of them all. After all, if you can broker peace with Korea why not with Russia? Why not with Iran? If the real war leader Winston S Churchill’s famous dictum “Jaw-jaw is better than war-war” comes back into fashion what future for the industries worth trillions of dollars which depend on war and the permanent threat of it? What future for the myriad of securocratic empires within the state if diplomats come back into business?
And so Trump – who has spent two years riding onwards into the valley of death, caught in a pincer between pussy hats and the pimps of the war machine – has leapt over the canons. Has Singapore decisively noodled his enemies? I rather think so. At least I hope so. And so should you.